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Creating the Next Generation Processor for Artificial Intelligence: Graphcore

thesiliconreview-nigel-toon-ceo-graphcore-18The future is coming. We’re just bringing it closer.

Artificial intelligence is one of the buzzingtopics in present time, in order to improve it there is a need for processor development and this is where Graphcore comes into the picture.

Graphcore was founded in 2016 as a privately held company. Its headquarters is in Bristol and has been creating a new processor, the Intelligence Processing Unit (IPU), specifically designed for artificial intelligence. The company has over 200 employees and has been a home for many talented individuals. Its unique IPU’s architecture has allowed developers to run current machine learning models orders of magnitude faster. More importantly, it lets AI researchers undertake entirely new types of work, not possible using current technologies, to drive the next great breakthroughs in general machine intelligence. The company believes its IPU technology will become the worldwide standard for artificial intelligence computers. The performance of Graphcore’s IPU is going to be transformative across all industries and sectors whether you are a medical researcher, roboticist or building autonomous cars. Graphcore’s team is at the forefront of the artificial intelligence revolution, enabling innovators from all industries and sectors to expand human potential with technology. What it does really makes a difference and has a wide client base. They have been expanding and are providing the best solutions in the market.

The company is optimistic about a future where people live healthier, more informed, more creative lives. Hence, it sees a world where technology enhances human potential and takes it into a new era of intelligence and progress that everyone can benefit from.

It also knows there are innovators who can build this future and it understands their ambition, and their challenges. So the firm has built a totally new processor which allows them to go for it. The company constantly push boundaries so others can do the same.

“Our IPU systems are designed to lower the cost of accelerating AI applications in cloud and enterprise data centres to increase the performance of both training and inference by up to 100x compared to the fastest systems today,” says Graphcore.

With this, it is easy to assume that the company will grow to a whole new level and will be operating for all its clients. With its amazing solutions and it is grabbing the attention of various prospects. It has a good grip over the industry and with its strong team, the firm is said to rise up in the market for sure.

Accelerating the Next-Gen Artificial Intelligence

Its IPU accelerators and Poplar software framework together make the fastest and most flexible platform for current and future machine intelligence applications, lowering the cost of AI in the cloud and data centre, improving performance and efficiency by between 10x to 100x.

Graphcore systems excel at both training and inference. The highly parallel computational resources together with graph software tools and libraries, allows researchers to explore machine intelligence across a much broader front than current solutions. This technology lets recent success in deep learning evolve rapidly towards useful, general artificial intelligence.

Intelligence Processing Unit

The firm has created a completely new processor which is considered to be one of the first that is specifically designed for machine intelligence workloads – an Intelligence Processing Unit (IPU) that will set a new pace of innovation.

The IPU has been optimized to work efficiently on the extremely complex high-dimensional models needed for machine intelligence workloads. It emphasizes massively parallel, low-precision floating-point compute and provides much higher compute density than other solutions.

At NIPS 2017 it shared more information about our IPU architecture, how to program the IPU with TensorFlow and Poplar and some preliminary benchmarks.

Graph Programming Framework

Poplar is its graph programming framework for IPU accelerated platforms, designed to meet the needs of customers in advanced research teams and those working on commercial deployments in a wide range of industry sectors.

It’s a C++ framework that provides a seamless interface to standard machine learning frameworks, like TensorFlow and MXNet, so its existing applications written for TensorFlow will work out of the box on an IPU.

To support this, Poplar has a full set of drivers, application libraries and debugging and analysis tools to help tune performance and a C++ and Python interface for application development making its IPU systems quick and easy to use.

The Poplar framework is completely scalable; it is a natural choice for all machine intelligence programming paradigms.

Nigel Toon – Co-Founder & CEO

Nigel was CEO of two VC-backed silicon companies before founding Graphcore; Picochip, which was sold to Mindspeed in 2012 and most recently, XMOS, in which Graphcore was incubated for two years before being established as a separate entity in 2016.

Before that, he was co-founder of Icera, a 3G cellular modem chip company, where he led Sales and Marketing and was on the Board of Directors. Icera was sold to NVIDIA in 2011 for $435M.

Prior to Icera, he was Vice President and General Manager at Altera Corporation where he spent 13 years and was responsible for establishing and building the European business unit that grew to over $400m annual revenues.

He was a non-executive director at Imagination Technologies PLC until its acquisition in 2017 and is the author of three patents.

“Our IPU system addresses current computational challenges in machine intelligence by providing the best solution available in the market.”